• Licensee has vacated but not handed over flats key to me

I had given my Mumbai flat on leave and license agreement for 2 years. This agreement ended on 15 Jan 2015. However, on the pretext of leaving next month and so on the licensee stayed on till 20 Dec 2015. On 21st Dec 2015  he moved all his belongings from the flat and shifted out. Our society manager has seen that all belongings were shifted and the flat is empty now.
The Licensee has however not handed over the flats key to me. He says he has sent the key by courier but I have yet to receive it.
What can I do. Can I get a key maker and enter the flat.
Asked 11 months ago in Property Law from Greater Mumbai, Maharashtra
Religion: Hindu
1) there is generally clause in agreement that one key of flat shall remain with the licensor . 

2) security deposit is returned to licencee simultaneously with delivery of possession to the licensor 

3)if  licencee has given in writing that flat is vacated and he has sent keys by courier and not received by you then you can enter the flat by having another key made of the flat . 
Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23217 Answers
1219 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
You can recover the rent with mesne profits for the period of Janu to Dec 2015 by filing a suit for his eviction in the court. The court can direct him to handover the keys and deliver the possession to you.
Ashish Davessar
Advocate, Jaipur
18102 Answers
448 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
A. If you had one more key that you can enter the premises by informing tenant either by mail or telephone call by recording the same based on vacation of flat. However, don't enter the premises solely and you need to contact neighbours or assocaiton for the witeness purpose.

B. If he had sent the keys through courier that you could insist for the POD number for courier enquiry purpose. In case, if the tenant not vacated, you can issue the legal notice and file eviction suit by seeking arrears of rent.
B.T. Ravi
Advocate, Bangalore
736 Answers
29 Consultations
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The licensee has not delivered the key that was given to him, which implies that he is asserting possession of the premises. If you now open the property and enter with the original key then the licensee would be at liberty to file a criminal complaint for house trespass against you, in addition to filing a suit for injunction or possession, as the case may be. Even a trespasser is to be evicted in accordance with the due procedure laid down under the law. If you have the original key then first issue a lawyer's notice to the licensee that you intend to enter the property and take back the possession thereof therewith and then do it. 
Ashish Davessar
Advocate, Jaipur
18102 Answers
448 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
1) you can have duplicate key made and enter the flat 

2) also send an email to the licencee that you have transferred the security deposit to licencee and have been informed by licencee that keys have been sent by courier .

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23217 Answers
1219 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
The Licensee has however not handed over the flats key to me. He says he has sent the key by courier but I have yet to receive it.
What can I do. Can I get a key maker and enter the flat.
You have to wait for  a reasonable time for the keys to arrive by courier as intimated by the tenant.
After a futile wait of the reasonable period, just confirm the tenant over phone about the dispatch details, if he is not giving reliable answers, you do not have to beg him, you can send a legal notice to him to vacate the premises and also direct him to pay the rent till the actual date of vacating the premise and after that you may initiate necessary legal action by filing an eviction suit.
T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
14006 Answers
127 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
The licensee told us on phone that he has sent keys, there is nothing in writing though.
Can I go ahead and get duplicate key made and enter the flat.
It will not be legal to enter into the house using duplicate key.
If he claim that his valuable things kept in the house is lost after you entered nto the house with the help of duplicate keys, the danger of theft offence on you is imminent.
If you do not get the keys by courier service which should be addressed on your name alone, you can initiate legal proceedings against the tenant as suggested in my previous reply. 
T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
14006 Answers
127 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
1. Send him a letter stating that you have not received the keys yet which he claimed as have sent to you informing him that you shall be forced to open the lock by other means in presence of the society secretary if you do not get the keys within next 7 days. Mark a copy of this letter to local police station,

2. After 7 days, get the lock opened by either breaking it or making a duplicate key thereof in presence of the secretary of your society and if there is any item of the leasee still left in the flat, make an inventory thereof taking the signature of the secretary and/or other witnesses and write the leasee to take back his left over items, if any, with in next 7 days otherwise you will not be responsible for its safe keeping. You can also arrange to make a nil inventory to avoid this problem.
Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
12104 Answers
230 Consultations
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1. You can not legally enter in to the flat which is in possession of someone till the possession is returned to you,

2. Take a letter from him returning  possession of your flat to you for entering in to your flat,

3. If he refuses to give any such letter, act as advised in my earlier post. 
Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
12104 Answers
230 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0

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